Results tagged ‘ jim coates ’

August 4 – Happy Birthday Jim Coates

Today’s Pinstripe Birthday Celebrant was one of the meanest Yankee pitchers ever to take the mound. Jim Coates was a tall skinny right-handed starter and reliever for New York from 1959 until he was traded to the Senators in ’62, for an even taller and skinnier pitcher named Steve Hamilton. Coates’ nickname was “the Mummy,” given to him by his Yankee teammates because he always slept with his eyes open. On one Yankee plane trip, Manager Casey Stengel’s wife accompanied the team and when she passed a napping Coates on a return-trip from the bathroom, she told Casey one of his players “was sitting back there dead.”

Born in the tiny village of Farnham, Virginia, Coates had been signed by the Yankees in 1951 and pitched in their farm system for eight long years. His problem was control. He had none. In one minor league game he walked 13 hitters in a row. Fortunately for Coates, he got on a team managed by former Yankee pitcher, Eddie Lopat. Lopat helped him with his delivery and his tempo and pretty soon Coates had evolved into the organization’s very best pitching prospect. After a cup-of-coffee visit to the Bronx in 1956, Coates came up for good in 1959. He went 30-9 during his first three seasons with the team and finished his four year Yankee career with a 37-15 record. Except for one relief appearance for Whitey Ford in the 1961 World Series against the Reds, he did not pitch well in his three postseasons with New York and never really became the star the Yankees thought he would be.

Coates had a very bad temper and a reputation as one of baseball’s most aggressive headhunters. I’ve also read that he was considered pretty much a racist by some of his Yankee teammates. But the guy had a knack for winning quite a few more games than he lost every season for some very good Yankee teams.

Coates shares his August 4th birthday with this multiple Cy Young Award winnerthis less successful former Yankee pitcher and this former Yankee skipper.

Year Age Tm Lg W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1956 23 NYY AL 0 0 13.50 2 0 0 0 0 0 2.0 1 3 3 0 4 0 2.500
1959 26 NYY AL 6 1 .857 2.87 37 4 17 2 0 3 100.1 89 39 32 10 36 64 1.246
1960 27 NYY AL 13 3 .813 4.28 35 18 5 6 2 1 149.1 139 78 71 16 66 73 1.373
1961 28 NYY AL 11 5 .688 3.44 43 11 15 4 1 5 141.1 128 60 54 15 53 80 1.281
1962 29 NYY AL 7 6 .538 4.44 50 6 25 0 0 6 117.2 119 62 58 9 50 67 1.436
9 Yrs 43 22 .662 4.00 247 46 89 13 4 18 683.1 650 336 304 65 286 396 1.370
NYY (5 yrs) 37 15 .712 3.84 167 39 62 12 3 15 510.2 476 242 218 50 209 284 1.341
CAL (3 yrs) 4 3 .571 4.02 51 5 14 1 1 3 112.0 102 55 50 9 49 70 1.348
WSA (1 yr) 2 4 .333 5.28 20 2 9 0 0 0 44.1 51 29 26 4 21 31 1.624
CIN (1 yr) 0 0 5.51 9 0 4 0 0 0 16.1 21 10 10 2 7 11 1.714
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/4/2013.